Seven years ago, BWBR opened an expansion in Madison with a handful of employees who extended the reach of the 97-year-old architectural and interiors design firm into a new part of the Midwest.
On Aug. 26, the firm moved to a new office across from the Wisconsin Capitol, expanding its own space to accommodate an employee count that has nearly doubled in the location and a workload that spans health, education, science and technology research, and secure environments.
“When we opened our offices, we wanted to be part of the dynamic growth of the region stretching west from Milwaukee and south from Eau Claire and Green Bay. Today, we can say that Wisconsin is a key part of our growth,” said Tom Hanley, AIA, managing principal of BWBR’s Madison office.
The new location in U.S Bank Plaza at 1 S. Pinckney Street on the Capitol Square is home to 11 design professionals, with current postings for additional employees in interior design and project management. The growth in the Madison office mirrors that of the Saint Paul-based firm as a whole which has seen its staff grow nearly 60 percent in the past seven years and includes an office in Omaha that opened in 2018.
“While we had decades of history working in the state, we knew that having a fully staffed office in Madison would allow us to serve organizations better,” said Peter G. Smith, FAIA, president and CEO of BWBR. “Now working with a number of state agencies and organizations in education, health, research, and secure environments, we can be more responsive to those who are seeking to improve the performance of their facilities through design.”
Since coming to Madison, BWBR has designed projects for Carroll University, where the new Hastad Hall won a sustainability award this year through the U.S. Green Building Council Wisconsin, as well as remodeled and fully modernized dorms for University of Wisconsin-Stout and a soon-to-be constructed Sesquicentennial Engineering Hall at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville. The office is also designing the Mendota Juvenile Treatment Center expansion, leveraging its nationally recognized work in mental health to improve treatment for Wisconsin children. In December 2018, the BWBR-designed Capitol East Parking Ramp in Madison also opened.
“There’s so much exciting growth occurring in downtown Madison. Coupled with the vitality of the Capitol Square, the new office location will provide the energy and inspiration that our current and future staff want to help organizations transform the lives of others,” Hanley said.